ISSN (Print) 1996-7845

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Alina Shenfel'dt1
  • 1 National Research University Higher School of Economics, 20 Myasnitskaya Str., Moscow, 101000, Russian Federation

The European Development Response to the Refugee and Migration Crisis

2018. Vol. 13. No. 4. P. 195–212 [issue contents]

This paper is focused on the European development response to the refugee and migration crisis. European development aid was impacted by the refugee and migration crisis and appeared to be a tool to smooth the consequences of the crisis in Europe. The author conducted semi-structured interviews with scholars, policymakers and representatives of civil society and came to conclusion that the European Union (EU) and its members, instead of developing a strategic programme to resolve this structural issue, used a tactical solution to achieve the short-term goal of stopping migration. Short-term motivations prevailed over a long-term strategy and resulted in the politicization of development aid in policy papers: there was a significant change in the discourse regarding migration and development assistance. While EU members have indeed excessively used official development assistance (ODA) to host refugees in their countries, EU development programmes in African countries have been largely relabeled as “migration-related.” So far there is no evidence-based research that redistribution of aid beneficiaries has taken place as a result of the policy to tackle the “root causes” of migration.

This paper first outlines the European policy framework on development assistance which is aimed at migration management. Then it identifies the EU initiatives to mainstream migration into the development agenda, and considers members’ use of ODA to cover domestic expenses for refugees and asylum seekers. The paper concludes by outlining the key concerns regarding instrumentalization of aid.

Citation: Shenfeldt A. (2018) The European Development Response to the Refugee and Migration Crisis. International Organisations Research Journal, vol. 13, no 4, pp. 195-212 (in English). DOI: 10.17323/1996-7845-2018-04-09.
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